Mile Jedinak calls time on Caltex Socceroos career

Caltex Socceroos captain Mile Jedinak has called time on his international career.

In an emotional Instagram post on Monday, Jedinak announced that he was stepping aside after 79 games for Australia.
Scroll down for a snapshot of Jedinak's international career.

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I can confirm that after much deliberation I have made the decision to retire from playing international football. As a young boy growing up it was my dream to play for Australia and to pull on the famous green and gold shirt to represent my country. To have been given the opportunity to not only fulfil that dream, but to have done it 79 times, and many of which as captain, makes me incredibly proud and thankful. The countless unbelievable moments that I have experienced will stay with me forever, and I can honestly say that looking back I’ve had some of the best times of my life on the pitch playing for the Socceroos. It is an enormous privilege to represent your country and one I did not take lightly. Words will never be able to do justice the feeling of immense pride I felt when representing Australia. I gave everything I had in every single game I played to try and achieve success for our nation. However, after a huge amount of time reflecting and discussing with those closest with me, I feel that it is the right time to move aside in order to focus on my club football and prolonging that journey. Looking back, I feel blessed to be able to leave with memories that will last a lifetime. The feeling of captaining our country to Asian Cup glory in 2015, and to have been able to contribute to achieving success for Australia, will stay with me forever. Additionally being able to captain the team, and score, in two World Cups is something I could only have dreamed about as a boy. There are just too many highlights to mention them all. I would like to thank all of those who helped make it all possible. Thank you to everyone at the FFA, the team management and all of my teammates throughout the years. It’s been an incredible journey alongside you all. Thank you to my family for your unwavering love and support throughout my international career. And finally I have to say a special thank you to the Australian fans for believing in me and supporting me through thick and thin. I’ve tried to do you all proud every time I’ve stepped out on to the pitch. We have an exciting generation of players coming through and I now can’t wait to support the team in the future 🇦🇺

A post shared by Mile Jedinak (@milejedinak15) on

The Early Days

Jedinak played at the 2003 FIFA World Youth Championship while with Sydney Olympic, and made a total of nine appearances for the Australia under 20s side.

His first full international cap came in a friendly against Singapore in 2008, and made his first FIFA World Cup™ appearance at the 2010 edition in South Africa in the opening group stage match against Germany.

From there, Jedinak’s stocks continued to rise. He scored his first international goal during the 2011 AFC Asian Cup to level things up against South Korea, and added his second against Bahrain in the same tournament.

Jedinak first captained the national team in a friendly against Ecuador in Lucas Neill’s absence back in 2014 and became the 57th ever captain of Australia – but a bigger honour was yet to come. 

The Captaincy

Ahead of the 2014 FIFA World Cup™, Jedinak was handed the captaincy on a full-time basis by then-Australia boss Ange Postecoglou.

He scored the less memorable of the two goals against the Netherlands in Australia’s 3-2 loss to the Dutch, from the penalty spot to put the Aussies in the lead.

Jedinak retained the captaincy for the 2015 AFC Asian Cup on home soil, and scored from the penalty spot in the first group stage match against Kuwait.

He missed a number of matches in the competition thereafter having suffered an ankle injury, but returned to lift Australia’s first international trophy since the 2004 OFC Nations Cup. 

The Veteran

Jedinak missed out on the 2017 FIFA Confederations Cup through injury, but returned after the tournament to play a key role in Australia’s qualification for the 2018 FIFA World Cup™.

He scored a hat-trick in Australia fifth round FIFA World Cup™ qualifier against Honduras, a 54th minute free-kick and two penalties late on, to secure passage to the tournament.

Aged 33 at his third major international tournament, Jedinak was one of Australia’s most important once again. A midfield general, Jedinak not only battled to protect the Caltex Socceroos' backline, he also scored the Roos’ only two goals in Russia from the penalty spot against France and Denmark.